Charting a Better Recovery

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This webinar is a partnership of the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law and the Human Rights Law Centre.

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The twin crises of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the first economic recession in 30 years, have highlighted and deepened many of the cracks in our community, and shown the fragility of many things we take for granted. In tough times, many are struggling to make ends meet, keep a roof over their heads, and ensure they can access services like health care and education.

As public attention and political decision-making focuses to what recovery looks like in 2021, and what lessons need to be learned so that future crises are better handled, it is time to look at who is being left behind in the recovery, and how a stronger human rights focus like from an Australian Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms can make our laws, policies and services better.

Hear from speakers that are at the frontlines of the issues, and the expertise to show what the solutions look like.

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Moderator: Professor the Hon. Kevin H Bell AM QC

Director of the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law, Monash Law

Professor the Hon Kevin H Bell AM QC is the Director of the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law in the Faculty of Law at Monash University. He was a justice of the Supreme Court of Victoria for fifteen years and wrote a number of leading judgments under the Victorian Charter of Human Rights, including Kracke, Patrick’s Case and PBU and NJE.

He was president of the Forensic Leave Panel and president of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Appeals Tribunal. Before becoming a judge, Professor Bell was for twenty years a barrister and Queens Counsel with a national practise in human rights and administrative, native tile and constitutional law. He has a Master of Studies in International Human Rights Law from Oxford University and in 2017 was awarded the honour of Member of the Order of Australia for ‘significant service to the law and to the judiciary, to native title and human rights, and the community’.

Cassandra Goldie, Chief Executive Officer Australian Council of Social Services @cassandragoldie

Dr Cassandra Goldie is CEO of the Australian Council of Social Service, the national peak body for the community sector, and an advocate for tackling poverty and inequality. She has deep public policy expertise in economic and social issues, civil society, social justice and human rights and is a regular media and public commentator and conference presenter. Prior to joining ACOSS, Cassandra held senior roles in both the not-for-profit and public sectors at local, national and international levels, including with the Australian Human Rights Commission, the Darwin Community Legal Service, Legal Aid Western Australia and the global Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions.

Cassandra is Adjunct Professor with the Law Faculty at the University of New South Wales. She has a PhD from University of New South Wales and a Masters of Law from University College London. She is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. She serves on the Advisory Committee for the Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law, the UNSW Law Advisory Committee, the Australian Climate Roundtable, the Pinnacle Foundation Board and the Energy Charter Independent Accountability Panel.

Hugh de Kretser, Executive Director Human Rights Law Centre @HughdeKretser

Hugh was a board member of the Human Rights Law Centre when it was established in 2006 and joined the staff team in 2013 as the Executive Director. Under his leadership, the Centre has more than tripled in staffing and resources and continues to extend its positive impact on human rights in Australia.

Hugh started his legal career at the law firm Mallesons and then began working to protect and promote human rights as the Manager of the Brimbank Melton Community Legal Centre and the Executive Officer of the Victorian Federation of Community Legal Centres.

Mary Sayers, CEO, Children and Young People with Disability Australia @maryjsayers

Mary Sayers joined Children and Young People with Disability (CYDA) as Chief Executive Officer in July 2019. Over her career she has worked across policy and research, advocacy and service delivery to progress positive outcomes for children and young people, and the broader determinants of social wellbeing. She has family experience of disability as a parent, and is a passionate advocate for the rights of children and young people.

Her previous roles have been Deputy Chief Executive Officer at the Victorian Council of Social Service (VCOSS) for almost five years, Manager, Children, Young People and Families at the City of Whittlesea and Associate Director of translational research, policy and service development and the Centre for Community Child Health at the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute.

She was on the Board of Management of QEC Early Parenting Centre for eight years including two years as chair of the board. She is a current board member of the Australian Council of Social Service.

Katherine Temple, Director of Policy and Campaigns, Consumer Action Law Centre

Katherine Temple is the Director of Policy & Campaigns at Consumer Action Law Centre, a campaign-focused consumer advocacy organisation that offers legal and financial counselling assistance. Katherine is passionate about social justice, and advocates for law reform across a range of economic and social policy issues including consumer credit, insurance, energy and telecommunications. Katherine has degrees in Laws and Legal Practice (Honours) and International Studies from Flinders University. Prior to joining Consumer Action in 2014, Katherine worked as a lawyer for the financial services regulator and in private practice

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